If the seven emotions of happiness, anger, grief, fear, love, hate, and desire are applied inappropriately, they can bring harm. When they are applied appropriately, even though there is no harm, there is also no great benefit. Cultivators should be able to control these seven kinds of emotion. They should not deal with things at an emotional level, nor compromise the Buddhadharma because of emotional attachments.
The Seven Emotions:
Happiness: Excessive happiness harms the heart and brings on heart disease.
Anger: Excessive anger harms the liver and brings on liver disease.
Grief: Too much crying harms the lungs.
Fear: Excessive fear harms the gall bladder.
Love: Excessive love harms the spirit and nerves.
Hate: Excessive hate harms one's sensibilities and causes emotional imbalance (such as psychological disorders and mental illness).
Desire: Excessive lust harms the kidneys. (Desire refers to any form of greed.)
Cultivators of the Way should observe that:
When there are no stirrings of happiness, anger, grief, or joy, the mind is in a state of equilibrium. When those feelings have been stirred, and they act in their due degree (neither too little nor too much), there ensues a state of harmony. This equilibrium is the great root (the basis) of all things in the world, and this harmony is the universal path which they all should pursue.
Therefore cultivators should know how to apply the seven emotions appropriately and in moderation.
There are also ten kinds of harm which come from lack of moderation. If cultivators do not know these, they will encounter problems.
Ten Kinds of Harm
Walking for too long injures the tendons.
Standing for too long injures the bones.
Sitting for too long (except in meditation) causes harm to the blood.
Sleeping for too long causes harm to the pulse [blood circulation in the veins and arteries].
Listening for too long harms the nerves. It wastes the energy of the ear.
Looking for too long harms the spirit. The eyes are harmed by the fatigue.
Speaking for too long harms the breath [qi]. When the mouth opens, one's energy scatters.
Eating too much harms the heart. Overeating makes one susceptible to heart disease.
Thinking for too long harms the spleen. Continual harm to the spleen causes loss of appetite.
Too much sexual activity decreases one's lifespan. Those who frequently engage in lust tend to be short-lived.
※ In our lives, we should decide upon our principles and practice according to them.